Kazan: Izd. Tsentral’nogo izdatel’stva Mari, 1920. Item #1151
176 pp. 17,5x13 cm. In original printed wrappers. Tears of the spine and covers with minor fragments lost, soiling of covers, otherwise very good and clean internally.
First ever dictionary of the Hill Mari language. Extremely rare. The book was composed by Vsevolod Shorin (1888-1938, executed) and edited by the head of the Central Union of Maris, S. Gavrilov-Epin.
The word ‘cheremis’ was widespread in pre-revolutionary Russia, indicating one of Finno-Ugric ethnic groups, Mari people. It was initiated by their neighbors, Erzyas and was more common than their own ethnic name in the Russian use.
The Mari territory in Povolzhye was annexed by Russia with other lands of the Kazan khanate in the late 16th century. Preserving their cultural identity and native religion, Maris were influenced by Tatars, Bashkirs, Chuvash, Mordvins and Russians. During the Soviet period, large numbers of minorities were moved into the Mari lands, including Crimean Tatars, that altered demographics and culture. In the Mari El Republic, the ethnic group consists of two parts that have their peculiarities in speech, costumes and customs: Hill (right bank of the Volga) and Meadow Maris (left bank). Outside these lands are also Northwestern and Eastern Maris.
Nowadays about 36,8 thousand people speak the Hill Mari language. It is co-official with Russian and Meadow Mari languages in the Republic. It uses a modified Cyrillic script and the alphabet is closer to Russian now than it was in the early 20th century. According to the preface, this dictionary contained 10 000 words using only 28 letters. It means that the alphabet had added 9 letters in the Soviet era.
Worldcat doesn’t track this edition.